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Hear straight from our graduates.

One of the things that I enjoyed most about the course was the diversity of the students and the variety of their backgrounds, from fine art and furniture-making to law and nutrition.

Designer, Paul Belford Ltd

Eleanor Robertson

Tell us a bit about what you were doing before Shillington and what made you want to change your career?

I originally studied English Literature at Oxford University. Directly before Shillington I was juggling two jobs—doing the marketing for a pub group in Kent and working as an account manager at a London PR agency. I also took on freelance projects as a copywriter and brand strategist. My day-to-day work was varied; marketing, publicity, social media, event planning and menu development. Some of it was exciting and glamourous: I saw Robbie Williams in his underpants, shielded Jamie Oliver from the paparazzi and got paid to taste gin! But the truth is that I spent years feeling confused about what I wanted to do. There’s a lot on my CV because I avoided making decisions about the future. One advantage, though, was that I had the chance to try my hand at lots of different things, including graphic design, art direction and photography. I eventually realised that my passion lay in bringing together images, words and ideas.

I taught myself how to use the Adobe suite and began applying my new skills, taking on freelance commissions for local businesses. Though I’m still apologising to the printers who had to work with me, I became more confident and gained focus. Finally, in 2017, I decided to take the leap and pursue graphic design full-time. I handed in my notice, borrowed a hefty loan from the bank and enrolled at Shillington. This felt like a gamble—at nearly 30, I was signing up for more debt and uncertainty while my friends were all advancing in their careers, buying their first homes and getting dogs.

I worried, a lot—that I wouldn’t be any good at graphic design, that I wouldn’t enjoy it after all, that I wouldn’t find a job. I enjoyed the work I was doing, I was valued by my employers and I had opportunities for further promotion. It was hard to leave, but I wanted more creative fulfilment from my career and I knew that I needed to challenge myself. I am so glad I did.

How would you describe your experience studying at Shillington? Any stand-out moments you’d like to share?

Shillington was exactly what I was looking for, allowing me to retrain without going back to university. I already had basic software skills, but the course filled in the gaps while developing my eye and creative problem-solving abilities. The teachers were fantastic and I am still amazed by how they teach so much in such a short time. Each brief was designed to test us to our absolute limits, and the pace was judged to perfection. From day one, when we were given a box of pipe cleaners to facilitate a bonding exercise, I felt excited and happy to be at Shillington. The atmosphere encouraged creativity while also being structured and supportive. I won’t pretend it was all a dream. Though I knew the term would be intense, I didn’t anticipate what an emotional rollercoaster it would be. There were moments of self-doubt and frustration. I cried twice in the toilet, a lot more at home and threw my laptop at the wall one weekend. But I’d do it all over again in a shot.

Visit Eleanor’s website and read her full interview on the blog.

Lori Beth Kaye
Senior Product Designer, The Iconic

Ray Wong
Designer, Oink Creative

Keiran McCann
Graphic Designer, Victoria’s Secret

Emily Campos
UX Designer, Wix

Jaira Adlawan
Senior Visual Designer, Sephora

Ani Monteleone
Designer, The Wall Street Journal

Hamish Snow
Designer, Josephmark

Eleanor Robertson
Designer, Paul Belford Ltd

One of the things that I enjoyed most about the course was the diversity of the students and the variety of their backgrounds, from fine art and furniture-making to law and nutrition.

Designer, Paul Belford Ltd

Eleanor Robertson

Tell us a bit about what you were doing before Shillington and what made you want to change your career?

I originally studied English Literature at Oxford University. Directly before Shillington I was juggling two jobs—doing the marketing for a pub group in Kent and working as an account manager at a London PR agency. I also took on freelance projects as a copywriter and brand strategist. My day-to-day work was varied; marketing, publicity, social media, event planning and menu development. Some of it was exciting and glamourous: I saw Robbie Williams in his underpants, shielded Jamie Oliver from the paparazzi and got paid to taste gin! But the truth is that I spent years feeling confused about what I wanted to do. There’s a lot on my CV because I avoided making decisions about the future. One advantage, though, was that I had the chance to try my hand at lots of different things, including graphic design, art direction and photography. I eventually realised that my passion lay in bringing together images, words and ideas.

I taught myself how to use the Adobe suite and began applying my new skills, taking on freelance commissions for local businesses. Though I’m still apologising to the printers who had to work with me, I became more confident and gained focus. Finally, in 2017, I decided to take the leap and pursue graphic design full-time. I handed in my notice, borrowed a hefty loan from the bank and enrolled at Shillington. This felt like a gamble—at nearly 30, I was signing up for more debt and uncertainty while my friends were all advancing in their careers, buying their first homes and getting dogs.

I worried, a lot—that I wouldn’t be any good at graphic design, that I wouldn’t enjoy it after all, that I wouldn’t find a job. I enjoyed the work I was doing, I was valued by my employers and I had opportunities for further promotion. It was hard to leave, but I wanted more creative fulfilment from my career and I knew that I needed to challenge myself. I am so glad I did.

How would you describe your experience studying at Shillington? Any stand-out moments you’d like to share?

Shillington was exactly what I was looking for, allowing me to retrain without going back to university. I already had basic software skills, but the course filled in the gaps while developing my eye and creative problem-solving abilities. The teachers were fantastic and I am still amazed by how they teach so much in such a short time. Each brief was designed to test us to our absolute limits, and the pace was judged to perfection. From day one, when we were given a box of pipe cleaners to facilitate a bonding exercise, I felt excited and happy to be at Shillington. The atmosphere encouraged creativity while also being structured and supportive. I won’t pretend it was all a dream. Though I knew the term would be intense, I didn’t anticipate what an emotional rollercoaster it would be. There were moments of self-doubt and frustration. I cried twice in the toilet, a lot more at home and threw my laptop at the wall one weekend. But I’d do it all over again in a shot.

Visit Eleanor’s website and read her full interview on the blog.

Gerald Torto
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Sinead Murphy
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Bianca Oggiano
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Christopher J Porter
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Katie Lodge
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Amee Wilson
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Jordan Demetriou
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Ashley Ronning
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Emily Somers
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Anara Davletaliyeva
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Erin Gale
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Tiffany Yee
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Amy Sheehan
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Emma Ladlow
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Braden Floris
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Alexis Waller
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Halah El Kholy
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Alexander Rog
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Jessica Bakker
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Bianca Chu
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Greg Bemis
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Arnold Omanyo
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Tahmena Lutfi
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Meredith Wallis
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Miranda Mayne
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Lindsay Koffler
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Bobby Hendry
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Anika George
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Mark Osmond
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Lily Moore
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Liana Modolo
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Victoire Scherer
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Mikel McCavana
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Kelly Hansen
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Alexander Wu-Kim
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Kirsten McColl
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Nicole Rogers
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Frankie Young
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Pooja Dharia
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Jackson Todd
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Dawn Moloney
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Caroline Keefe
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Sophie Lord
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Ocki Magill
Founder, Letter Bug Studios

Andy Vargas
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Moshe Bien
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Crystal Lin
Designer, DNA Design

Stephen Grace
Designer, Christopher Doyle & Co.

Jing Ong
Designer, Autumn

Paul and Amoni Liddell
Graphic Designers, Westpac CX and Feel

Eleanor Rogers
Letterpress Printer, Chapel Press

Andy Tharagonnet
Designer, ThumbsUp

Erin Donati
Founder, Harley Quinn & Co.

Ben Peters
Freelance Graphic Designer

Brad Holten
Designer, Big Idea

Natalia Baker
Freelance Graphic Designer

Guy Pittard
Freelance Graphic Designer

Bea Sambalido
Freelance Graphic Designer

Oceane Combeau
Designer, Fernand et Firmin

Charly Tudor
Graphic Designer, Holdens

Anna Mullin
Illustrator, Sneaky Racoon

Theo Witrylak
Visual Designer, EPAM

Stephanie Antill
Founder, St Clement Creative

Paul McKie and Myles Sharpe
Directors, Autumn

Pete Conforto
Designer, For The People

Nicol Reid
Founder, Little Creative

David Scott
Designer, The Mix

James Birks
Freelance Illustrator and Designer

Jane Durlacher
Graphic Designer, Paper Stone Scissors

Rachel Lee
Freelance Graphic Designer

Romayne Gadelrab
Freelance Graphic Designer

Janno Saft
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Roo Cassels
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Vanessa Burgess
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Olivier Adam
Freelance Graphic Designer

Molly Sitter
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Cari Sekendur
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Alexandra Menzies
Freelance Graphic Designer

Tim Jones
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Carla Scotto
Freelance Graphic Designer

Meg Walker
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Christina Capetola
Designer at Wayfair

Louise Hamer
Design Lead, We Are Empire

Ina Estrada
Founder, Par Vous Designs

Chrystal Christie
Photographer/Graphic Designer, One Round Entertainment

Ulrika Johnson
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Sam Jacobs
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Sean Raynor
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Irina Manning
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Margherita Baldi
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Henriette van Baren
Graphic Designer, ABC Carpet & Home

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